Another mixed season for Scottish teams

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The rugby season has all but come to a close as Cup competitions reach their climax.

Sadly, no Scottish teams are involved yet again, but it has not been all bad this season.

Glasgow flew the flag in the RaboDirect Pro 12 league and, had they clinched a home fixture in the play-offs, who knows what might have happened against Leinster.

Much credit has to go to Gregor Townsend in his first full season as coach, although many would argue the foundations were laid by his predecessor, Sean Lineen.

It seems there’s been a good atmosphere in the squad and that’s been translated into good performances on the field.

The squad has a good mix of youth and experience and Glasgow’s foreign imports have made an excellent impression. The same can’t be said of Edinburgh, who are still looking for a permanent coaching team.

Despite a wonderful run in the European Cup last year, Edinburgh have been little short of dreadful in both league and cup competitions.

By contrast with Glasgow, their overseas imports have been very ordinary signings and have deprived younger Scottish players the opportunity to make their way in the game. Whoever comes in to run the team would do worse than begin with a clear-out of some of their foreign players.

Thankfully the Scotland Sevens squad retained their Tier 1 status by qualifying for the IRB circuit at Twickenham last weekend.

With the Commonwealth Games just over a year away and a target of a medal in those games, that’s a great relief.

Altogether, there have been some positive signs in Scottish rugby this season, but with change still afoot in the corridors of power, there’s a long way to go before Scotland can be considered a real force in the rugby world again.